Cheech Marin

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Cheech Marin
Cheech Marin 2012.jpg
Marin at the 2012 ALMA Awards.
Birth nameRichard Anthony Marin
Born(1946-07-13) July 13, 1946 (age 68)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Years active1971–present
GenresLatin comedy, stoner comedy
Subject(s)Recreational drug use,
drug culture
SpouseDarlene Morley (1975-1984),
Patti Heid (1986-2009),
Natasha Rubin (2009-present)
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For other uses, see Cheech (disambiguation).
Cheech Marin
Cheech Marin 2012.jpg
Marin at the 2012 ALMA Awards.
Birth nameRichard Anthony Marin
Born(1946-07-13) July 13, 1946 (age 68)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Years active1971–present
GenresLatin comedy, stoner comedy
Subject(s)Recreational drug use,
drug culture
SpouseDarlene Morley (1975-1984),
Patti Heid (1986-2009),
Natasha Rubin (2009-present)

Richard Anthony "Cheech" Marin (born July 13, 1946) is an American comedian, actor, voice actor and writer of Mexican descent who gained recognition as part of the comedy act Cheech & Chong during the 1970s and early 1980s with Tommy Chong, and as Don Johnson's partner, Insp. Joe Dominguez on Nash Bridges. He has also voiced characters in several Disney productions, including Oliver and Company, The Lion King, It's Tough to be a Bug!, Cars, Cars 2 and Beverly Hills Chihuahua.

Marin's trademark is his characters' strong Mexican accent; this is part of a comic persona, rather than a natural accent, as Marin is of Mexican descent yet was born and raised in the United States.

Early life[edit]

Marin[1][2] was born in Los Angeles, California, the son of Elsa (née Meza), a secretary, and Oscar Marin, a policeman in the LAPD.[3] Marin was born with a cleft lip, which has long since been repaired. Although he speaks some Spanish and uses it in some of his movies, he is not particularly fluent.[4]

Marin's nickname "Cheech" is short for "chicharron", a fried pork skin that is a popular snack in Mexican cuisine[5] and a favorite of marijuana smokers afflicted with "the munchies", and the nickname's alliteration with Chong's surname made "Cheech and Chong" an obvious choice for the name of the duo. The name of this character gave rise to the popular term "cheeched", meaning "under the influence of marijuana, usually at a relatively high dose".[citation needed]

Marin graduated from Bishop Alemany High School, located in California's San Fernando Valley, as well as from San Fernando Valley State College (now California State University, Northridge), where he was a member of Phi Sigma Kappa. Marin auditioned to sing for Frank Zappa in 1967, but moved to Vancouver, British Columbia in September of that year to avoid the U.S. draft during the height of the Vietnam War.[6] In Vancouver, Marin met his future comedic partner, Tommy Chong.


Comedy albums and films[edit]

Main article: Cheech & Chong

As a part of the highly successful comedy duo Cheech & Chong, Marin participated in a number of comedy albums and feature film comedies in the 1970s and 1980s. Tommy Chong directed four of their films, while co-writing and starring in all seven with Cheech Marin.

Later films and television work[edit]

After he and Tommy Chong went their separate ways in 1985, Marin starred in a number of films as a solo actor, most notably Born in East L.A., The Shrimp on the Barbie, Tin Cup, and Once Upon a Time in Mexico.

Marin made the transition to full-time television work when he co-starred on the short-lived The Golden Girls spin-off The Golden Palace (1992–1993), and later with Don Johnson, Jaime P. Gomez and Yasmine Bleeth in the police show Nash Bridges (1996–2001), in which they played San Francisco police-detective partners. In recent years he has been active in playing supporting roles in films and performing voice overs for animated features. After appearing in a supporting role in Judging Amy, playing an independently wealthy landscape designer, Marin starred in the CBS sitcom Rob, with Rob Schneider.

Marin is a favorite of director Robert Rodriguez, who has worked with Marin seven times; the last two installments of the Mexico trilogy, the Spy Kids trilogy, From Dusk Till Dawn and Machete. He provided his voice for several Disney animated films, most notably Tito in Oliver & Company (1988), Banzai in The Lion King (1994) and Ramone in Cars (2006) and Cars 2 (2011). He also reprised the Banzai role in Kingdom Hearts II. He made a small appearance as a dockworker in the movie Ghostbusters II.

Children's music albums[edit]

Marin has released two best-selling albums in the children's music genre, My Name is Cheech, the School Bus Driver (1992) and My Name is Cheech, The School Bus Driver "Coast to Coast" (1997). Both albums were released bilingually. In July 2007, Cheech Marin added children's book author to his list of accomplishments with the release of Cheech the School Bus Driver, illustrated by Orlando L. Ramirez (Published by HarperCollins).

In 2005, Marin appeared on Nickelodeon in the Dora the Explorer series.[7] The episode was titled A Crown for King Bobo, and Juan Bobo was voiced by Marin.[8]

Additional television appearances[edit]

In late 2006, Marin participated in Simon Cowell's Celebrity Duets, having sung with Peter Frampton, Randy Travis, Clint Black, Aaron Neville, and Al Jarreau. He was the fourth to be eliminated. In that same year, he voiced as Gaspar Gomez in Scarface: The World Is Yours.

In recent years, Marin has had a recurring role in the hit television series Lost, playing David Reyes, Hurley's father.

He was a co-host for WWE Raw on March 1, 2010 with his comedy partner Tommy Chong, in Oklahoma City.

Marin also sings on the hidden track "Earache My Eye" on Korn's album Follow the Leader.

On March 18, 2010, Marin beat journalist Anderson Cooper and actress Aisha Tyler on Celebrity Jeopardy!'s Million Dollar Celebrity Invitational. Cooper admitted he was "crushed" by Marin.[9] Marin also won his semifinal round early May but lost in the May 6–7 final to Michael McKean. He had previously won the first Celebrity Jeopardy! tournament in 1992.[10]

In January 2012, he was one of eight celebrities participating in the Food Network reality series Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off. He was eliminated on the third week of the competition.[11]

Other interests[edit]

Marin is an avid collector of Chicano art. Two national touring exhibitions have featured works from his private collection.

He is also an avid golfer, although he initially disliked the sport until he co-starred in Tin Cup.

Personal life[edit]

Marin was married in 1975 to Darlene Morley, who co-produced Cheech & Chong's The Corsican Brothers and also played minor roles in earlier Cheech & Chong films under the name Rikki Marin. The couple had one child and divorced in 1984.[12] Marin married Patti Heid in 1986; they had two children and have since divorced.[13] Marin married his longtime girlfriend, Russian pianist Natasha Rubin, on August 8, 2009, in a sunset ceremony at their home.

Marin resides in California.[14]



1978Up in SmokePedro de Pacas
1980Cheech & Chong's Next MovieCheech/Dwayne "Red" Mendoza
1981Nice DreamsCheech
1982Things Are Tough All OverCheech/Mr.Slyman/Narrator
1983Still Smokin'Cheech
YellowbeardEl Segundo
1984Cannonball Run IITire Store Employee
Cheech & Chong's The Corsican BrothersCorsican Brother
1985Get Out of My RoomCheech/Ian Rotten
After HoursNeil
1986Charlie Barnett's Terms of EnrollmentElvis & Fan
Echo ParkSid
1987Born in East L.A.Rudy
Fatal BeautyBartender
1988Mickey's 60th BirthdayDisney Janitor
Oliver & CompanyTito the ChihuahuaVoice
1989Ghostbusters IIDock Supervisor
Rude AwakeningJesus Monteya
Troop Beverly Hillscameo
1990Far Out ManCheech
The Shrimp on the BarbieCarlos
Mother Goose Rock 'n' RhymeCarnival Barker
1992Ferngully: The Last RainforestStumpVoice
1994Charlie's Ghost StoryCoronado
The Magic of the Golden Bear: Goldy IIIMaster Borgia
A Million to JuanShell Shock
The Lion KingBanzai the HyenaVoice
1995DesperadoShort Bartender
1996Blazing DragonsVoice
From Dusk Till DawnBorder Guard/Chet Pussy/Carlos
The Great White HypeJulio Escobar
Tin CupRomeo Posar
It's Tough to be a Bug!Attraction at Disney's Animal Kingdom
1999The Nuttiest NutcrackerMacVoice
2000See You in My DreamsEstaban
2000Picking Up the PiecesMayor Machado
2001Spy KidsFelix Gumm
2002Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost DreamsFelix Gumm
2002PinocchioThe FoxVoice
2003The OrtegasHenny Ortega
2003Masked and AnonymousProspero
2003Spy Kids 3-D: Game OverFelix Gumm
2003Once Upon a Time in MexicoBelini
2003Good Boy!The HenchmenVoice
2004The Lion King 1½Banzai the Hyena
2004Christmas with the KranksOfficer Salino
2005Sian Ka'anVoice
2005Fall Down a SchoolErick Matthew, 202, 26, 57, 211 Bus Motorists
2005UnderclassmanCaptain Victor Delgado
2005Kingdom Hearts IIBanzai the HyenaVoice; video-game
2006Scarface: The World is YoursGaspar Gomez
2006Mater and the GhostlightRamoneVoice
2007The Union: The Business Behind Getting HighHimself
2008Beverly Hills ChihuahuaManuelVoice
2009Expecting a MiracleFather ArturoTelevision film
2009Race to Witch MountainAuto Mechanic
2010The Perfect GamePadre Esteban
2010Tales from EarthseaHareVoice; US version only
2010MachetePadreCheech also makes an appearance as the Padre in the (then) fictitious Machete trailer for the 2007 Grindhouse double feature. The trailer appears in the DVD for the Planet Terror portion of Grindhouse.
2011Cars 2RamoneVoice
2011Hoodwinked 2: Hood vs. EvilMad Hog
2012El Santos vs. La Tetona MendozaNarrator, El CharroVoice (Spanish-language Mexican animated film)[15]
2012Seven PsychopathsThe Dog, Erick MatthewVoice
2013Cheech & Chong's Animated MovieCheech
2014The Book of LifePancho Rodriguez
2015El Americano: The Movie[16]MartinVoice

Television credits[edit]

Cheech and Chong comedy albums[edit]


External links[edit]